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Lust, Caution Reviews

Ben Kenigsberg
Time Out
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Full Review Source: Time Out | Original Score: 3/5

November 17, 2011
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
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Full Review Source: Orlando Sentinel | Original Score: 3/5

May 13, 2009
Bob Mondello
NPR.org
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October 18, 2008
Wally Hammond
Time Out
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Its dark romanticism lingers in the mind.

Full Review Source: Time Out | Original Score: 4/6

January 4, 2008
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
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Overwrought and overlong, Ang Lee's Lust, Caution nevertheless has some moments of exquisite beauty and a potentially star-making performance from newcomer Tang Wei.

Full Review Source: Associated Press

January 3, 2008
Stanley Kauffmann
The New Republic
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Lust, Caution asks some patience of us, but our patience pays off.

Full Review Source: The New Republic

November 7, 2007
Desson Thomson
Washington Post
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In a film where casting is a vital component in the edgy equation, Leung and Tang make a picturesque and dramatically compelling couple.

Full Review Source: Washington Post

November 3, 2007
Claudia Puig
USA Today
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There is deception, suspicion and self-delusion, but it all seems rendered at arm's length, despite the consummate artistry of the filmmaking.

Full Review Source: USA Today | Original Score: 3/4

October 20, 2007

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
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October 20, 2007
David Fear
Time Out New York
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Why does this hot-and-heavy love story feel so cold and clipped overall?

Full Review Source: Time Out New York | Original Score: 3/6

October 20, 2007
Jack Mathews
New York Daily News
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There is plenty of lust exercised in the athletic, don't-try-this-at-home sex scenes between Hong Kong star Tony Leung and the stunning Chinese newcomer Wei Tang.

Full Review Source: New York Daily News | Original Score: 3/4

October 20, 2007
Dana Stevens
Slate
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Both a cannily constructed spy thriller and a grim kind of love story.

Full Review Source: Slate

October 20, 2007
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
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There's too much caution and not enough lust.

| Original Score: 2.5/4

October 19, 2007
Ray Bennett
Hollywood Reporter
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The film looks gorgeous but the plotting is clumsy and the acting is flat.

October 16, 2007
Anthony Lane
New Yorker
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By the time [Lee] gets to the lust, it is too late to throw caution to the winds.

Full Review Source: New Yorker

October 15, 2007
Bruce Newman
San Jose Mercury News
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In the broad strokes and beautiful particularity of its bittersweet love story, Lust, Caution could not come from any other place but China.

Full Review Source: San Jose Mercury News | Original Score: 3.5/4

October 12, 2007
Bruce Westbrook
Houston Chronicle
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A quietly compelling drama of hidden desperation and fierce passions.

Full Review Source: Houston Chronicle | Original Score: 3/4

October 12, 2007
Tom Long
Detroit News
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Mixing a stately pace with bursts of raw violence and blunt eroticism, Lust, Caution indeed deftly blends those two attitudes.

Full Review Source: Detroit News | Original Score: B

October 12, 2007
Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
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Overly extended adaptation of a short story about a female Chinese nationalist who uses sex to compromise and trap a cruel Japanese collaborator.

Full Review Source: Detroit Free Press

October 12, 2007
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
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It's a masterpiece of tangled allegiances and corrupted innocence, equating sexual intimacy with the search for a person's soul. There's no guarantee the discovery will bring joy.

Full Review Source: Toronto Star | Original Score: 3.5/4

October 5, 2007
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
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Like the two opposing forces in the title, the book and the film compliment and balance each other; each is, in its way, a rich experience.

Full Review Source: Seattle Times | Original Score: 3/4

October 5, 2007
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
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Stylized and visually arresting, with intense sex scenes that earned the film an NC-17 rating, Ang Lee's Lust, Caution is an immersion into another time, place and mentality.

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Original Score: 3/4

October 5, 2007
Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
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Intellectually, emotionally, Lust, Caution is all palette and no canvas -- it's an epic on a postage stamp.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 2.5/4

October 5, 2007
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
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Lust, Caution is a disappointment coming from director Ang Lee, but it's a watchable one, and it rattles around in your head for a long time after you've seen it, as much for what it does right as for where it goes wrong.

Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Original Score: 2/4

October 5, 2007
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
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A freeze-dried story has been only partially defrosted.

Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal

October 5, 2007
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
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The nature of the sex is Lee's subject, and he is too honest to suppress that.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 3/4

October 5, 2007
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
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A brooding meditation on the unnerving power and terrible cost of emotional and political masquerades, the Chinese-language Lust, Caution gets under your skin with its examination of what qualifies as love and what does not.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 4/5

October 4, 2007
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
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It's 158 minutes long, and worth every languorous second.

Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune | Original Score: 4/4

October 4, 2007
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
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A rich, beautifully detailed espionage thriller that captures the bygone days of Shanghai -- and 1940s Hollywood noirs' romantic evocations of same.

Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer | Original Score: 3.5/4

October 4, 2007
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
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This is one of the major disappointments of the film-going year.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 2/4

October 4, 2007
Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
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Lust, Caution is one of the few honestly observant political films, totally devoid of retrospective feel-good propaganda.

Full Review Source: New York Observer

October 3, 2007
Rex Reed
New York Observer
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It's positively amazing how boring so much sex can be when it subs for character development and compelling narrative.

Full Review Source: New York Observer

October 3, 2007
David Ansen
Newsweek
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For all its hothouse passions and sometimes brutally explicit sex scenes, the storytelling seems curiously stolid, the style too movie-ish for its own good.

Full Review Source: Newsweek

October 2, 2007
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
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This is a beautiful film. The cinematography is gorgeous.

October 1, 2007
Noel Murray
AV Club
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Conceptually, Lust, Caution has been thoroughly thought-through, down to every lipstick stain Wei leaves on her teacups.

Full Review Source: AV Club | Original Score: B-

September 28, 2007
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
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Yes, the movie is called Lust, Caution. But what it really needed to be about was incautious love.

Full Review Source: Newark Star-Ledger | Original Score: 2.5/4

September 28, 2007
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
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I was struggling to stay awake.

Full Review Source: New York Post | Original Score: 1.5/4

September 28, 2007
Manohla Dargis
New York Times
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Lust, Caution is a sleepy, musty period drama about wartime maneuvers and bedroom calisthenics, and the misguided use of a solid director.

| Original Score: 3/5

September 28, 2007
Stephanie Zacharek
Salon.com
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The sex scenes -- intense, affecting and emotionally raw -- are the best thing about this frustratingly limp movie.

Full Review Source: Salon.com

September 27, 2007
Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
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Ang Lee's uneven new film is a bit like a Chinese variant on Paul Verhoeven's The Black Book.

Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor | Original Score: B

September 27, 2007
John Anderson
Newsday
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If Paul Verhoeven hadn't produced Black Book last year, Lust, Caution would have seemed like its own subgenre, the eroto-feminist spy thriller.

Full Review Source: Newsday | Original Score: 3.5/4

September 27, 2007
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
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Aided by the nuanced, forceful performances of his two leads, [Ang Lee] has made Lust, Caution something to be seen and savored.

Full Review Source: ReelViews | Original Score: 3.5/4

September 26, 2007
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
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Lust, Caution wants us to feel the erotic ping of buttoned-up people ripping open those buttons, but too often it's the film's drama that's under wraps.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: C+

September 26, 2007
Robert Wilonsky
Village Voice
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...it's amazing how something so cold is expected to generate so much heat.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

September 25, 2007
David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
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Like Lee's other films, Lust, Caution grows out of a tension between essence and form -- between a person's emotions and the role he or she must play.

Full Review Source: New York Magazine/Vulture

September 24, 2007
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
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[Ang] Lee is a true master, and his potently erotic and suspenseful Lust, Caution casts a spell you won't want to break.

| Original Score: 3.5/4

September 20, 2007
Derek Elley
Variety
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Too much caution and too little lust.

Full Review Source: Variety

August 30, 2007
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